Inspiration – If ye break faith

Pastor Brian Gilroy,
High Prairie Church of the Nazarene

This week is Remembrance Day. A vastly different Remembrance Day than we have ever experienced as COVID-19 has changed the way we can honour the veterans.

Livestream for the most part in our local area or nationally televised services will be the norm for this year while many a Legion hall will be reserved for the actual veterans and a few honoured guests.

Some schools such as our own High Prairie Elementary will go the extra mile for our veterans and encourage a class or two to go to the local cemetery and place a poppy on the grave of each veteran regardless of their religious affiliation.

Lt.-Col. John McCrae’s well-known poem In Flanders Fields paints a picture of the sacrifices made by our soldiers during the April 1915 battle in Belgium’s Ypres. Our children read it; our children sing it. We buy the red and black poppies from the Legion; but have we taken its message to heart?

McCrae was the first Canadian to be appointed as a consulting surgeon to the British Army. He worked on wounded men for 17 days during the battle of Ypres. His goal was to save the life of all who fought for freedom.

One line in the poem is especially poignant, “If ye break faith with us who die”.

Those brave young men and women from all walks and ethnic origins fought for our freedom in the hope that future generations would fight for what is right. The question facing us today is: “Have we kept faith, or have we abused the trust given to us?”

These men and women gave their lives to fight corruption, bullying, and to preserve the right of religious freedom.

I believe these brave soldiers would be disappointed in the way our society is going. Politicians who often use the name of Jesus to be elected but do not honour Him in their office. Lobbying groups that seek preferential treatment instead of attempting to unify our nation and promote healing from the hurts inflicted in the past.

People distorting the true meaning of Luke 6:31 – “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” Exchanging the meaning of caring for one another to become – “Take advantage of others as often as you can; or they will take advantage of you”.

During this time of COVID when many people are searching for meaning and hope, we need to re-evaluate how we live our lives, what are inner motivations truly are and how is our contribution to the world seen.

Are we faithful in promoting religious freedom or do we attempt to deny others the freedom to choose God by promoting secular theories only?

Are we honest in our business dealings or will we do anything to make a buck more?

In Flanders Fields, challenges us to remember the high price of sacrifice to make a better society. Have you and I been faithful to pass this same attitude on to the next generation; or are we responsible for denying them hope by the lives we lead and the values that we instill in them through life lessons?

Lip service is not what our veterans died for. Working the system to gain influence or power or for financial gain at the cost of others is not what these brave men and women died for. Freedom to believe in God and his ability to change a life is. I want the world to know that I believe that Jesus Christ is the Lord and Saviour through whose sacrifice on the cross we can have forgiveness; healing; and hope.

What are you promoting with your freedom?

Next week: Dan Cooper, Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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